Maybe you’ve heard Outlands’ instant classic “Com Ocean” or its several iterations listed below, including the awesome reworkings by TEXTBEAK + DEFA, MIRROR KISSES and SACRED ANIMALS. This is a track I can really fantasize about Grace Jones slowly stripping off her power-kabuki suit to. Music out of another era, an era where I discovered skinnemax and realized films without nudity weren’t worth the trouble. If you’ve managed to miss the boat on this one, holy fuck, this is fully realized music, you’ll want to grab at the very least the original as a FREE DOWNLOAD below. Crash Symbols is about to re-press their incredible OUTLANDS EP on cassette, I have a feeling these won’t be in stock for very long, so get to it if you’re into having the best possible new shit in your collection. As per usual I sense their importance and want to give you a full introduction so you can confidently tell your friends about this shit, which I highly suggest if you want to make yourself look good. They’ve given us a pretty fucking incredible mix and interview, so get that shit up there, and get that shit below FREE DOWNLOAD.


Can you tell my readers a little about Outlands and how you came together, were you in past bands, can you tell me a little about those, how did your name come about or what inspired it?

We’ve both played in bands of all shapes and sizes since we were both around 14-15 years old – punk, shoegaze, prog, rock, folk. We were playing in a sort of dreamy rock group and Melissa started writing stuff that we couldn’t pull off live, and Outlands was born. The name choice is inspired from the Godard film, Alphaville. We feel like we’re in the Outlands all the time.

Who are some of your biggest influences?

This is funny question because musically it’s evolved from pretty obvious references to friends and peers. I (Melissa) am listening to a new Dreams West/Tokyo Hands collaboration as I type this and thinking, “oh, man, I really like that drum track.” I get a lot of lyrical content and inspiration from literature and film. It’s safe to say that we like naturalism, noir, and nouvelle vague.

Can you tell me about labels you like who you feel are putting out some of the best new music, do you feel like being on a label is important these days?

There’s tons of labels putting out amazing music! Off the top of my head, folks who put out consistently mind blowing stuff: Ghostly International, Bella Union, 4AD, Triangle, Italians Do It Better, Cascine, True Panther, Terrible, Captured Tracks. Of course, we’re partial to Chill Mega Chill and Crash Symbols…

What blogs do you enjoy the most, what makes them special?

We’re fond of group contributed blogs like PORTALS and Ad Hoc (f/k/a Altered Zones) since the composite of different blogs’ interests tends to give you varied content, that is, if you’re looking for that sort of thing… Sometimes, you want something specific…like what IVIYH digs or Slicing Up Eyeballs or more niche stuff. The great thing about there being so many blogs is the variety of content. Sometimes you feel like long-form (The Quietus), sometimes you don’t (Gorilla vs Bear).

Can you tell me about your first release you’re currently working on?

We’re just starting to work on a full-length now…we’re going into this with a few works in progress but will be writing a lot of new material over the next few months. We’re literally bursting with excitement to begin…don’t stand too close.

What is the music scene like for dark electronic music in VA?

We can’t speak for the past, since we’ve only been here a few years, but, here in Blacksburg, we have a lot of wonderful friends who come to our shows. House shows are the norm here, so it’s really like a giant party every time we play! As far as the rest of Virginia, we’ve only played Roanoke and Williamsburg, both of which were a lot of fun, but I’m not sure what other places are like. The only other group we’re aware of at the moment are our pals (and Chill Mega Chill label mates) Mirror Kisses who are based in Harrisonburg, which is about 2.5 hours away. We try to hook up with them as much as possible! <33 This message can serve as an open invitation for other VA dark electronic music folks to hit us up–we wanna know you!

Can you give me an example of something you consider perfect?

Eating fatty pork BBQ with vinegary Carolina sauce from a BBQ joint called Due South while watching a scary drive-in movie. Both are on the same street in the next town over.

If I were to vacation in your hell what should I expect to find there?

At least this: http://www.adweek.com/video/advertising-branding/freakiest-ads-2011-david-lynch-signature-coffee-barbie-136832?auto and possibly this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8y5GGL5LDmg

Have you had an experience with the supernatural that you’d be willing to share?

Despite my (Mark) best ouija boarding, herb burning + incantations, sadly, I’ve been unable to summon neither the spirits nor Captain Planet… An experience with the supernatural doesn’t have to be like the X-Files or anything, right? It could be like Heroes or something…that’d be better. Now all I can think is that the notion of supernatural is loaded. Curse you, logic!

Can you describe your most emotionally moving moment involving music? Or, the moment of live music that has had the greatest impact on you?

The first thing that comes to my (Mark) mind is this Sonic Youth show where there was literally a sea of people jumping around and totally losing themselves. I was part of that crowd until it completely overwhelmed me…I escaped to an upstairs balcony to regroup and looked down at the waves of bodies moving–that plus the lights really was a fully immersive psychedelic experience. Early raves were probably similar in a lot of respects…

Some are saying this is the greatest era to exist as a musician, others say it’s the worst, what has your experience been like?

I (Mark) assume people are referring to the waning industry machine and rise of internet-based systems. I feel fairly confident that we wouldn’t have had the ability to accomplish what we’ve accomplished without the current state of things. You and I certainly wouldn’t be having this interview! I don’t want to over-think it or apply a value judgment or anything. There are upsides and downsides, but I feel fantastic about what I’m doing and am optimistic about the future…that seems important, doesn’t it?

Have you ever been to a psychic, would you be willing to share that experience if so?

Other than my mom’s psychic phone reading, no. She told me I’d (Mark) be married with 3 kids and a successful professional ivy league-er or something. Um that didn’t happen.

If you could choose how the world would end, what would you choose?

Hmmm. Something quick we think… Have you seen Melancholia? Basically, the opposite of that would be fine by us.





I Vacation In Your Hell
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